Sep 22, 2009 2:30am
Re: FTP read-access is going away
Introductions- I just want to say, great job you guys have all been doing here at archive. I've been using it for at least six or seven years for music (and the occasional video) and if I were there in person talking to you I should like to bow for introductions. This is, I believe my first time posting in the forums.
So archive is moving its focus to a windows and mac centric browser interface while phasing out FTP for non-researchers. One justification for phasing out FTP is that with its technical focus on web apps, archive has no time for maintaining FTP.
Deadhead commented "I beleive the majority of your users are probably more technical than the average www visitor
and that as time goes on you will get more complaints about the lack of ftp support."
While this is likely true, I feel this makes the IA team's point: the average www visitor
should be able to use archive.org in vast and complex ways without learning (what are, for them) semi-obsolete computer skills. This will allow the IA to expand the base of those participating and making use of open content on the web.
If providing this technology truly does require shutting down FTP in some ways, then archive.org may, as many have suggested, alienate/frustrate some of its more technical users if it doesn't provide a new mechanism to do what a ftp like interface is capable of doing (uploading/downloading many specific files and/or very large files). We now have somewhat of a substitute for ftp uploading, and none for downloading (unless a user finds this particular forum topic and learns to use downthemall).
All valid concerns.
Overall, the upload->share buttons and the file uploading beta page are huge progress in my mind. If the file uploading beta page could be integrated with the design of the site, that'd be cool.